Healthy, Simple and Budget Friendly meal
A budget meal is always on the top priorities of many householders especially this time. While ensuring that we are on the set budget we shouldn’t compromise as well our health benefits.
A healthy, simple, and budget meal is always possible, it just depends on how you manage it. For sure, many mommies and wives out there are experts already in this matter.
We might have different styles and rules in this area but we have the same goal; to provide good food for our families.
Allow me to share with you guys my simple and common tips in planning our meal without hurting so much our pockets.
Before hitting the grocery store I already know what are the things I need to buy. And I have already set the budget for each category of the items.
Normally, I am doing my grocery on a weekly basis together with the meal plan for the entire week.
This is helpful to avoid buying unnecessary food items.
Based on my grocery planning I am adjusting the stuff that I need or not need to buy, especially if that will affect the budget. I am trying to balance the food- type consumption we will have. If we had eaten more meat products for the previous week, we should have more fish or veggies after that.
You can also try to think of alternative main ingredients for specific dishes. For me, one of my easiest meat alternatives is tofu.
Matching the Ingredients
In practical meal planning, it is always wise to match the ingredients to avoid wasting it. Let’s say I will buy a half kilo of long beans or squash, I need to plan on what different type of cuisine I can use these veggies with. I need to create different dishes with these rather cook it all with the same meal.
I can have a daily different meal practically.
Small Portion of Cooking
I am a type of cook who is a fan of preparing a small portion of a meal, rather do it with a big serving of the same dish. I guess I got this attitude from my father who was having a hard time back then thinking food to prepare for us. My younger brother was a bit picky and always want a new daily dish. I remember with the 1 kilo of chicken he can make a variety of meals that all of us are enjoying.
That habit of my father is very helpful in my adult life. It saves our budget while enjoying our nonrepetitive meal.
Here are my example of meal dishes with minimal ingredients. Per meal is based on two persons only.
1.Ginataang Kalabasa with Spinach – (Dinner / May 14)
2. There was a little leftover from the Ginataang Kalabasa, I add chicken and long beans to make a new dish of Ginataang Chicken (I forgot to take photos) (Lunch / May 15)
3. I bought these Long beans for AED3.00 which I guess I can use for a total of 3 dishes. I add the other portions in my Adobong Tofu (Dinner / May 15)
For one pack of Tofu (AED3.00) I manage to make 3 different kinds, aside from the Adobo with the long beans.
I divide it into 3 parts then fried it, this is my always to go to meat alternative.
4. The second Tofu Meal, Tofu with Bean Sprout (Lunch / May 16)
5. And finally, my sisig Tofu (side dish only)
6.While for the Bean Sprout, I make two kinds using 1 pack of AED3.00 My Bean Sprout with Egg (Dinner / May 16).
Imagine how much you can save, and maximize the ingredients if you have a good meal weekly plan.
With a minimal amount, I manage to have a healthy and delicious meal that hubby appreciates so much. This is way better than canned-goods meal if you are trying to budget.
- Total Main Ingredient cost is AED12.00
- Tofu @AED3.00 / Long Beans: AED3.00 / Bean Sprout: AED3.00 / Chicken Breast: AED3.00
- While for the seasonings it is always available in our pantry.
- Simple meal ideas
Some people believe in the thought that “save on everything but never on food” I do understand that opinion. But for me, planning and moderation are the keys.
This doesn’t mean depriving yourself, instead, there are health and financial benefits if you will pay attention to your meal preparation.
Please feel free to share us your thoughts, ideas on how to improve a practical meal planning guys.